Boldness, clarity and wisdom for fundraising professionals
No matter if it’s someone from an all-volunteer run organization or a nonprofit with fundraising staff, I inevitably hear this comment from someone: “I don’t want to ask people for money. It makes me uncomfortable.”
My answer is: Then don’t.
What I’m grateful for and celebrate today on World Gratitude Day:
- That you are a reader of my Fire Starters blog.
- That I do work that inspires me every day.
- That by teaching others the power of using stories to engage others, I hear heart-warming, heart-wrenching, mission moments, often.
Whatever you call these events their intention is to knock the socks off your guests and cause them to connect deeply with your mission and organization.. In my experience, that happens so rarely I decided to create a checklist to help guide well-intentioned planners through the process of conducting these tours or what I call an “experience our mission” session.
You already know sharing stories in your fall appeal is a “must do.”
But what story will you share?
Here are 6 recommendations for choosing a unique and compelling story.
These examples come from working watching organizations raise more money by sharing different types of stories during my 30+ years of helping nonprofit organizations raise $300 million from individual donors.
Are you wondering how your fundraising program is really doing? How you compare to your peers? Where you could be raising even more money? The Individual Donor Benchmark Report is for you!
Each year the IDB Report examines individual donor fundraising data from small and mighty organizations – those with budgets under $2 million. There’s no other source of this kind of information on average gift, retention rate, online giving, recurring donations, and much more.
It’s been 10 years that I’ve been self-employed. I started my company for the same reason I do my work today: to help as many people in the nonprofit community do more of what they want to do AND to have all the money they need to do it.
My niche, my gift, is to help people communicate differently.
My special sauce, so to speak, is helping people share powerful stories.
Your board meeting or fundraising committee meeting ends with a buzz.
Everyone is excited about the direction things are heading at your nonprofit organization. And people even agreed to tasks. With deadlines.
Yet, a month or so later when you meet you are disappointed…again.
Delivering breakout or mini-training sessions for local, state-wide, and national conferences is something I do often.
What doesn’t often happen is the conference attendees inspire me to tears.
The Page Education Foundation is a local foundation founded in 1988 by Alan Page and his wife Diane Sims Page when Page was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame.
You work hard on all the details of your nonprofit fundraising event but attendance was low. What went wrong? Never before has multi-channel marketing been more important. Even my 80 year-old mother uses social media to connect with friends and family.
Check out this terrific and brand new infographic from Maximillion Event Creators to guide you in your social media outreach for your next event.
The most common complaints I hear about sharing a story to increase fundraising revenue:
“I don’t know any stories” or “We don’t have any good stories.”
In 1999 I was the President/CEO of Prevent Blindness America, Greater Phoenix Division. New to the city, with a new job – I could have used those same complaints.